Elections in New Hampshire always tend to be interesting, but 2014 is shaping up to be quite a year in the Granite State. Gov. Maggie Hassan (D) is seeking a second term; there's a closely watched U.S. Senate race underway pitting two prominent figures, including former Sen. Scott Brown; there's a very competitive U.S. House race in the 1st district; and Democrats hope to reclaim the state Senate this year.
It's against this backdrop that the state Republican Party made a curious decision
about picking a culture-war fight.
The New Hampshire Republican Party toughened its stance on abortion over the weekend, adding support for fetal "personhood" rights into its official party platform. The party adopted new language at its annual convention on Saturday that pledges to "support pre-born child's fundamental right to life and personhood under the Fourteenth Amendment, and implement all Constitutional and legal protections," according to the New Hampshire Journal.
Just so we're clear, personhood measures ban all abortions, IVF treatments, and common forms of hormonal birth control.
In much of the country, Republicans who used to support personhood are running in the opposite direction
, hoping to distance themselves from such radicalism, but in New Hampshire, the state party decided to embrace personhood in a formal and official way.
What's more, note that the state GOP didn't do this at an obscure time when voters were unlikely to notice; rather, the New Hampshire Republican Party waited until there were just six weeks remaining until Election Day and then endorsed the right-wing policy.
One of the top Democratic goals for 2014 is getting women, most notably younger women, to care about this year's elections. Sometimes it seems as if GOP officials are trying to do Dems a favor.
More from the Huffington Post
New Hampshire Gov. Maggie Hassan (D) slammed the GOP's new language in a statement on Monday, calling it "anti-woman." Sen. Jeanne Shaheen (D-N.H.) immediately tied the GOP's newly declared support for personhood to her Republican challenger, former Massachusetts Sen. Scott Brown. "The message from Scott Brown and his Republican Party is disturbing, alarming and clear: they believe they should make the decisions about birth control and health care for women in New Hampshire and around the country," Shaheen said in a statement.
For his part, former Sen. Scott Brown (R-Mass.), running in New Hampshire just two years after losing in his home state, distanced himself
from his new state party's platform.